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...making Linux just a little more fun!
The Linux Gazette, Reborn
By Ben Okopnik

Nothing lasts. Favorite toys finally fall apart; old cars, the pride and joy of your high school days (and nights!) rust out, fade away, languish for lack of available parts. Relationships, business and personal, once so bright and exciting, wither like houseplants exposed to the desert sunlight and blow away like tumbleweeds.

During the past month, the Linux Gazette, as we and our readers have known it for a number of years, has come to an end. SSC, the company who had been hosting - and, to some degree, supporting - our efforts since shortly after the inception of the Gazette has decided that it somehow belongs to them, to change, adapt - or to destroy - at their pleasure. We - the people who have volunteered our efforts to write for it, assemble it, produce it, and publish it - disagree... and the wind of the desert howls over all, blowing away what once was, leaving nothing but the pure idea that still lives, independent of hardware, software, and corporate manipulation, and existing only in the minds of those who believe in it.

The smoke of the past rises in the air, dissipates... and is gone. But the spirit of things, if they are worthwhile, endures, and follows the original forms. "The King is dead - long live the King!" Mark Andreessen's Mosaic morphs into Netscape Navigator changes into the Communicator Suite mutates through (and survives!) The AOL Corporate Hellbeast emerges as Mozilla. The Linux Gazette, slated by SSC to slip off into a muddy swamp of CMS, obscurity, and the inevitably short slide into destruction, arises like the Phoenix from its intended pyre - purified, bright, and new.

Our mission, renewed and all the stronger for going through the fire, remains what it has been all along: "making Linux a little more fun." The core format of the Gazette will remain what it has been as well, static (and thus universally accessible and mirror-able) HTML and text and available for reading or download via the Web. (BONUS: For those of you who wish to read the text version on your Palm Pilots, or other handhelds that can read the Palmdoc format, I will be introducing our new PDB version as well.) Obviously, our URL and email addresses will change - we are now located at instead of the old ".com". The largest changes are going to be under the hood, where DNS, mirroring, site structure, author submission/input/feedback, and The Answer Gang lists live; all of these are intended to improve the process, making it easier for all of us to continue bringing - and hopefully improving - our content for you, our readers.

Welcome to the new Linux Gazette.

Release Notes, by Mike Orr ("Sluggo")

Most of the basic features of LG are in place. The following features, however, are changed:

The following pieces are unfinished:


Ben is a Contributing Editor for Linux Gazette and a member of The Answer Gang.

picture Ben was born in Moscow, Russia in 1962. He became interested in electricity at age six--promptly demonstrating it by sticking a fork into a socket and starting a fire--and has been falling down technological mineshafts ever since. He has been working with computers since the Elder Days, when they had to be built by soldering parts onto printed circuit boards and programs had to fit into 4k of memory. He would gladly pay good money to any psychologist who can cure him of the resulting nightmares.

Ben's subsequent experiences include creating software in nearly a dozen languages, network and database maintenance during the approach of a hurricane, and writing articles for publications ranging from sailing magazines to technological journals. Having recently completed a seven-year Atlantic/Caribbean cruise under sail, he is currently docked in Baltimore, MD, where he works as a technical instructor for Sun Microsystems.

Ben has been working with Linux since 1997, and credits it with his complete loss of interest in waging nuclear warfare on parts of the Pacific Northwest.

Copyright © 2003, Ben Okopnik. Copying license
Published in Issue 96 of Linux Gazette, November 2003

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